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Distressed Man Arrested

October 3, 2012 permalink

In a news item leaving more questions than answers, a caller to a crisis line has been arrested for threatening to kill a worker with Newfoundland and Labrador's Department of Child, Youth and Family Services. Crisis lines are a resource for distressed people contemplating suicide. The crisis staffer is supposed to help the caller with his problems. Is getting him arrested helpful?



Child welfare threat leads to criminal charge

A Bay of Islands man has been arrested for threatening to kill a worker with Newfoundland and Labrador's Department of Child, Youth and Family Services.

The RNC said the suspect, 41, allegedly called a crisis line on Monday night and made the threat.

Officers tracked the call back to a house in the community of Halfway Point.

The man has been charged with uttering threats and with breaching a court order.

He is scheduled to appear Wednesday in provincial court.

Source: CBC

Addendum: A follow-up article names the man as Sean Dobbin and gives some of the circumstances. He was expressing his frustration when a social worker prevented him from seeing his own children.



Man says he never intended to harm social worker

CORNER BROOK A Bay of Islands man convicted of uttering threats to kill a social worker told the court on Friday that he never intended to do any harm to the woman.

While Sean Dobbin took responsibility for his actions, he still placed some blame on the woman for the situation.

Dobbin, 41, of Halfway Point, indicated that the woman made things difficult for him. He said when he wanted to see his children, who are under the care of Child, Youth and Family Services, that the social worker came up with lame excuses. He said his intention was to challenge the woman in court.

Dobbin was arrested by the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary on Oct. 2 following an investigation into a complaint of uttering a threat to cause death. The threat had been uttered in a voicemail message Dobbin left for the woman at her place of work.

He went on trial before Judge Wayne Gorman in provincial court in Corner Brook on Feb. 15. In a written decision dated Feb. 26, Gorman found him guilty of uttering a threat and breach of probation. A third charge of uttering a threat to kill the woman to another individual was withdrawn.

In the decision, Gorman said that the message left by Dobbin referred to him being the woman’s “worst nightmare” and that he was going to “fight until (she) or someone else was dead.”

In convicting Dobbin, Gorman said he was satisfied that he intended for his words to be taken seriously and for them to intimidate the woman.

Dobbin appeared before Gorman on Friday as part of his sentencing hearing. Crown attorney Ed Ring asked the judge to sentence Dobbin to between 30 and 60 days in jail and to impose a period of probation of between 18 and 24 months. He also requested that Dobbin have no contact with the social worker and suggested a three- to five-year weapons prohibition could be imposed at the court’s discretion.

Ring said the sentence is in the range of those handed out for similar offences and would satisfy any concerns for public safety and interests.

Dobbin’s defence lawyer Jamie Luscombe, however, asked the judge to impose a lesser sentence in the range of 14 to 30 days incarceration. He also asked that Dobbin be allowed to serve that time either conditionally or on an intermittent basis.

Luscombe also suggested a period of 12-months probation and that the weapons prohibition was not necessary. As for having no contact with the social worker, Luscombe asked for an exception to allow contact through court proceedings due to the issue of custody of his children.

Gorman will render his decision in the case on March 26.

Source: Western Star